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07/07/20 Australian Head of Mission visits Donegal

Official Welcome

Garry Martin Donegal County Council, Seamus Neely Chief Executive, Donegal County Council , Robert Owen-Jones Head of Mission , Cathaoirleach Cllr Rena Donaghey, and Leas Cathaoirleach Cllr Noel Jordan.


The Australian Embassy Head of Mission Robert Owen-Jones took his first regional visit outside of Dublin to Donegal last week. During his visit, he stopped in Bundoran to meet with some of his fellow countryfolk Julian Farmer, Adam Cross, & Noah Lane from Foam, Bundoran who have made Donegal their home where he was warmly welcomed with some Australian tucker and made to feel home at in a Donegal sense of the way.


This was followed by a visit to the Orphan Girls Famine Memorial at the Ballyshannon Workhouse. Mr. Owen-Jones met with local historian Anthony Begley who shared stories about the orphan girls who had left Ballyshannon to be transported to Australia during the famine. The Head of Mission placed a wreath at the memorial.


Travelling on to Donegal Public Service Centre, Cathaoirleach Cllr Rena Donaghey and Leas Cathaoirleach Cllr. Noel Jordan along with Chief Executive Seamus Neely and Director of Service Garry Martin formally welcomed Head of Mission Robert Owen-Jones to County Donegal.


The Cathaoirleach invited the Head of Mission Robert Owen–Jones to meet with Donegal Municipal Members.



Robert Owen–Jones Australian Embassy Head Of Mission, laying a wreath at the Orphan Girls Famine Memorial in Ballyshannon to remember the 19 orphan girls who were shipped to Australia during the famine.


The Head of Mission travelled onto Ardara to pay his respects to the family of Mary Ellen Molloy who was working as a nurse in Australia when she died in a tragic road accident in December.


He then went on to visit Arranmore Island, accompanied by Head of Economic Development in Donegal County Council,  Anne Marie Conlon where he had an opportunity to see how remote working can be achieved in Donegal.


In the afternoon the delegation travelled to Letterkenny to the County Museum to meet with more Australian citizens who have made Donegal their home.


The final call was to Fahan, where they were met by Cllr Albert Doherty Cathaoirleach of Inishowen MD who accompanied the group to the Mass grave at St. Mura’s Church Of Ireland  were there lies the remains of two seamen  who were aboard the SS Laurentic that sank in Lough Swilly on 25th January 1917 where a  wreath was laid in their memory.

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